Our purpose is to propose a model of “Empowerment through the sport context” to guide psychosocial research in disability sport. We discuss the concept of empowerment in relation to sport for individuals with disabilities. Expanding upon the work of Hutzler (1990), we include three levels of empowerment (societal, group, and individual level) in our approach. Important moderators are age of onset of disability, gender, and type of disability. Important mediators are (a) at the individual level, achievement goals, identity, and self-efficacy; (b) at the group level, motivational climate, group identity, and collective efficacy; and finally, (c) at the societal level, the cultural context and political efficacy. Several methodological considerations are discussed, and various solutions are suggested. We also discuss the critiques that have emerged in relation to the use of the empowerment concept.
Anne Marte Pensgaard and Marit Sorensen
Anne Marte Pensgaard and Joan L. Duda
Drawing upon the Cognitive-Motivational-Relational Theory of Emotion (Lazarus, 1991, 1999, 2000) and Hanin’s (1993, 2000) conceptualization of emotions, the purpose of this study was threefold. First, the reported content, frequency, and intensity of emotions experienced by 61 athletes in relation to a stressful event when competing in the 2000 Olympic Games were determined. Second, the relationships between emotional responses and reported coping strategies and perceived coping effectiveness were examined. Finally, the degree to which emotions and perceived coping effectiveness predicted subjective and objective performance during the Olympics was ascertained. In general, the athletes experienced a high frequency of optimizing emotions. Optimizing emotions were related to coping effectiveness, which emerged as a positive predictor of objective competitive results. Coping effectiveness also positively predicted subjective performance while reported dysfunctional emotions emerged as a negative predictor.
Anne Marte Pensgaard, Glyn C. Roberts, and Holger Ursin
This study aimed to compare individual and situational motivational factors and the use of coping strategies among elite athletes with and without physical disabilities. Participants were Norwegian athletes from the 1994 Winter Olympics (n = 69) and Paralympics (n = 30) at Lillehammer. Quantitative data came from questions concerning expectations and satisfactions, and three instruments (Perception of Success Questionnaire, Perceived Motivational Climate Questionnaire, and the COPE Inventory). Qualitative data came from interviews. MANOVA analyses revealed that Paralympic and Olympic athletes had similar motivational profiles, but the Paralympic athletes perceived a more mastery-oriented climate, F(1, 98) = 12.6, p < .001. Both groups used similar types of coping strategies, except that Olympic athletes employed more redefinition and growth strategies, F(1, 97) = 6.72, p < .01. Paralympic athletes were also significantly more satisfied with effort and results. Paralympic and Olympic athletes were significantly different on only 4 of 11 variables.
Nikos Ntoumanis, Anne-Marte Pensgaard, Chris Martin, and Katie Pipe
The purpose of this study was to provide an in-depth account of amotivation in compulsory school physical education by examining its major causes, the way it is displayed, and how it can be tackled. From an initial participant pool of 390 British schoolchildren ages 14 to 15 years, 21 of them (15 girls and 6 boys) were selected to participate in semi-structured interviews. They were categorized as being amotivated based on their responses to a questionnaire measuring motivation in physical education. Three main perceived causes of amotivation were identified in the interviews: learned helplessness beliefs, low need satisfaction, and contextual factors. Amotivation was mainly displayed by nonattendance, low involvement in the class, and low intention to be physically active after leaving school. Students’ suggestions for reducing amotivation focused on the enhancement of positive affect, need satisfaction, and structural/organizational changes. The findings are discussed in conjunction with contemporary motivation theories and models of amotivation.